SOWMY Report: A Universal Pathway. A Woman's Right to Health

The report, launched at the 30th ICM Triennial Congress in Prague, Czech Republic highlights the progress made since the inaugural 2011 report and solutions to the barriers outlined in four key areas: availability, accessibility, acceptability and quality of midwifery services.

launch in Prague SOWMY 2014 was published by UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund together with the International Confederation of Midwives (ICM), the World Health Organization (WHO) and partners and reveals that major deficits in the midwifery workforce occur in 73 countries where these services are most desperately needed. The report recommends new strategies to address these deficits and save millions of lives of women and newborns. The 73 African, Asian and Latin American countries represented in the State of the World’s Midwifery 2014: A Universal Pathway – A Woman’s Right to Health suffer 96 per cent of the global burden of maternal deaths, 91 per cent of stillbirths and 93 per cent of newborn deaths, but have only 42 per cent of the world’s midwives, nurses and doctors. The report urges countries to invest in midwifery education and training to contribute to closing the glaring gaps that exist.

The State of the World's Midwifery 2014
Key Messages
Toolkit for Advocacy 


The first report to explore the state of midwifery practices across the globe, entitled the State of the World's Midwifery: Delivering Health, Saving Lives, was launched on 20 June 2011 at the ICM Congress in Durban, South Africa. 

The report, supported by 30 partners, provides proof of the global shortage of midwives around the world. It offers new information and data gathered from 58 countries across all regions and aims to help strengthen the practice of midwifery around the world.


The State of the World Midwifery Report: Delivering Health, Saving Lives
La pratique de sage-femme dans le monde in 2011
El Estado de las parteras en el mundo 2011
Access midwifery and SOWMY press resources here
SOWMY Final Press Release: Adequate Midwifery Could Save 3.6 Million Lives
Communique de presse  
Comunicado de prensa 


Presenting the upcoming State of the World’s Midwifery report
Présentation du rapport à venir sur l’État de la pratique de sage-femme dans le monde   
Presentación del próximo informe El estado mundial de la partería

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32nd ICM Triennial Congress 2020 - Bali, Indonesia 21-25 June